Suburban mall begins banning unsupervised kids

Suburban mall begins banning unsupervised kids

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Starting Friday night in the western suburbs, North Riverside Park Mall has a new policy.

On Friday and Saturday nights, no one 17-years-old or younger can come inside the mall unless he or she is accompanied by an adult. The policy starts at 6 p.m.

The bottom line - no more hanging out at the mall, kids. Fox 32 News went to North Riverside Friday night and yes, they're checking IDs.

For several generations of kids, the mall was the default option when there was no school the next day and nothing else big was going on.

But the North Riverside Park Mall says it's become too much and the place has gotten overcrowded with kids who are not doing any shopping. They're just using the place as a rec center.

The mall has been on guard since teens got into a pair of brawls one night in 2006. Police ended up shutting down the whole place.

The mall says it now wants to entice more families to come to the mall on weekend nights.

The move is part of a larger trend. One of the first malls to ban unsupervised teens was the Mall of America, which did it in 1996. Since then they expanded the hours. The policy starts at 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

Across the country, more than 65 other malls have since enacted similar policies.

As one mall put it: they're tired of being a "babysitting service."

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